The creators of the Netflix sci-fi spooky series Stranger Things, Ross and Matt Duffer, have been hit by a new lawsuit. The allegation: that the Duffer brothers took the idea for the series from a short film called Montauk.
Charlie Kessler released Montauk back in 2012, with the film – which is viewable on Vimeo, but not to Australians at the time of writing – focusing on secret government tests.
According to TMZ, which obtained documents relating to the lawsuit, Kessler argues that he pitched an idea for a series based on his short film to the Duffer brothers in 2014.
Netflix would later purchase the rights to Stranger Things off the Duffer brothers in 2015. The film was originally supposed to be set in Montauk, New York, which formed the backdrop for Amity Island in JAWS, although the setting was later changed to the fake town of Hawkins, Indiana.
Kessler’s proposed series was called The Montauk Project, a conspiracy theory about alleged government tests and projects around time travel and psychological warfare. Stranger Things was also inspired by the same conspiracy, with Gaten Matarazzo and Joe Keery confirming in a WIRED interview that is was based on Camp Hero, a government lab in Montauk:
Netflix has yet to issue a comment following multiple reports. Two conditions of Kessler’s lawsuit is that all materials allegedly plagiarised from his concept are to be destroyed, along with compensation. We’ll keep you posted as we know more.